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The list of books available on PEP Web is sorted alphabetically, with the exception of Freud’s Collected Works, Glossaries, and Dictionaries. You can find this list in the Books Section.

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Kanzer, M. (1987). Bloomsbury/freud. The Letters of James and Alix Strachey, 1924-1925: Edited by Perry Meisel and Walter Kendrick. New York: Basic Books, 1985. 360 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 56:699-702.

(1987). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 56:699-702

Bloomsbury/freud. The Letters of James and Alix Strachey, 1924-1925: Edited by Perry Meisel and Walter Kendrick. New York: Basic Books, 1985. 360 pp.

Review by:
Mark Kanzer

James and Alix Strachey were members of the Bloomsbury set associated with Cambridge University, a group possessed of an intellectual brilliance and leadership, commingled with sexual fluidity, that disposed several of its members to an interest in psychoanalysis. These characteristics were decidedly pronounced in James and in his older brother, Lytton Strachey, whose biographies of Queen Victoria and of Elizabeth and Essex set a new style and fascinated Freud. James's first description of Alix, in a letter to Lytton, described the American-born young woman as "delightful—an absolute boy" (p. 23). He lamented that, although he had raised a beard, he had not succeeded in convincing anyone that he had "fucked a woman" (p. 21).

James and Alix were a devoted couple for nearly fifty years, with no need, as the letters attest, for pretenses by either of them. They married in June of 1920 (a suicidal threat by Alix seems to have had something to do with this), and their honeymoon proved to be the prelude to James's analysis with Freud. The latter was favorably impressed by James's ambition to become a psychoanalyst himself, though less so by the notion that his ambitions should lead to a reduction in fees.

After James's analysis began, Alix developed "neurotic symptoms," and she asked to be analyzed by Freud too. Though Freud deemed this unusual, he acquiesced. Soon he had an unusual proposal of his own to make: he suggested that they translate one of his works into English.

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